Neil Weatherill

Neil Weatherill joined Bush Search and Rescue in May 1989 as a Police Liaison Officer and at the same meeting volunteered as Minute Secretary.  He carried out both roles efficiently and effectively for the duration of his involvement for which Bush Search and Rescue is very grateful.

Neil (standing) with the brand new bushwacker skis and sked acquired with support from BP Australia.

Also pictured are John Retchford, John Hillard, BP Australia representative and Duncan Brookes.

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Search and Rescue for three people on Mount Bogong, 9 August 2004

Call-outAt 8.00 pm 9/8/2004 on Sunday evening Don Mason from the Falls Creek Police Station rang to seek assistance from Birkebeiner Nordic Ski Club Search and Rescue group.

Three people on the summit of Mt Bogong had contacted emergency services by mobile phone requesting urgent assistance. They were all very cold and one was suffering severely from hypothermia. They had dug snow holes beside a snowpole  [Number 1264]  near Eskdale Point with blizzard conditions prevailing.

Five members from B.N.S.C. plus a ski patroller from Mt Hotham responded to the callout and met at Mt Beauty Police station at 10.30 pm.

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2005 National Bravery Award to members of the Birkebeiner Ski Club

Members of the Birkebeiners Nordic Ski Club received a group citation in the 2005 National Bravery Awards for their contributions to the search and rescue of three men in blizzard conditions on Mt Bogong in August 2004.

The recipients were Jim Gargan, Paul Grusovin, Rob Borland, Jarrod Paine and David Panozzo, together with Gordon Guest-Smith from the Mount Hotham Ski Patrol.

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Peter Dunbar

Peter Dunbar was active with Bush Search and Rescue for over 45 years.  He contributed as a searcher, a club delegate and a Field Organiser, a role he performed for over a decade.

Peter was then a Police Liaison Officer until he officially retired at the Bush Search and Rescue 50th Anniversary event on 4 March 2000, at which he was presented a Certificate of Appreciation for his very significant contribution to the organisation over five decades.

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John Retchford

John Retchford joined Bush Search and Rescue Victoria and attended his first search in 1961. During the subsequent forty-five years he made substantial and significant contributions in many aspects of Bush Search and Rescue’s field and administrative operations.

John attended many searches and became a Group Leader.

John was a Field Organiser for twenty-eight years from March 1973 until March 2001, during which time he lead Bush Search and Rescue members on 17 searches.

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Bill Bewsher

Bill Bewsher took on the role of founding Convener in 1949 of the Search and Rescue Section of the Federation of Victorian Walking Clubs, which was later to become Bush Search and Rescue Victoria.  Bill was Convener from 1949 to 1956 and again for a year in 1958-1959.

Bill Bewsher at the BSAR 50th Anniversary Dinner. Photo: BSAR Collection

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Stuart Brookes OAM

Stuart Brookes is a keen bushwalker who has contributed much to recreational bushwalking, including long service with Bush Search and Rescue, in Victoria.

Stuart has produced maps of Victoria’s Alpine Area and other popular bushwalking destinations from the late 1940s to the current day.  These maps are regularly updated and provide reliable and detailed information tailored to the needs of bushwalkers.

Stuart was director of Initial Training with the Bushwalking and Mountaincraft Leadership course from 1973 – 77 and chairman of the Bushwalking and Mountaincraft Training Advisory Board 1982 – 85.

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Rik Head awarded Emergency Services Medal

Rik Head, a long serving Bush Search and Rescue member and Field Organiser, was awarded the Emergency Service Medal for a lifetime commitment to search, rescue and safety in the bush and mountains on Australia Day, 26 January 2011.

As a Field Organiser in Bush Search and Rescue Victoria, Rik has been instrumental in implementing and improving many search, management and training methods and systems including the innovative use of technology.

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